The winds of change..
Talking a couple of months back, in the Rossi returns press conference, Lin Jarvis said:
"The main motivation, the main reason for us to be here (in GP) is not to get a title sponsor, our reason to be here is to promote the Yamaha brand and also to go racing, and to animate our motorcycle business in general and motorcycle sport. And so the main motivation is to do that."
This is clearly a very important factor in the racing departments pitch for corporate dollar when trying to convince the company board to fund a MotoGP season and, they have to compete against other departments to secure that money.
Part of that pitch is R&D and the trickle down benefit to production - electronics, fuel efficiency and a green philosophy to meet stringent emission law, safety - which in my opinion is little more than a soft soap to bag the dosh so they can enjoy themselves doing what they like..fairplay to them.
However..It creates a conflict of interest for racing which is supposed to be about going as fast as you can, not an R&D platform for the manufacturers with escalating costs and spurious real life benefits focussed on fuel economy.
The manufacturers have to justify that racing budget to the board and, therefore, everyone else who races has to play to the rules set in place that make that pitch relevant. But, brand awareness by standing on the podium all over the world is more important to them and if rules can be manipulated to ensure this..why not?
This is the fundamental difference between the MSMA and IRTA, who are there just to race. It's the reason that fans get pissed off with the factories as their philosophy neuters the spectacle and forces competition to quit.
It's the reason Carmelo rolled out CRT and snatched the rule making priveleges back from the manufacturers. This is a sport that has to compete in a hard pressed global market against other sport for the publics hard earned cash, sponsorship and TV contracts.
In what other Global, world championship sporting arena, do SOME of the competitors have the power to make the rules, that exclusively benefit them and which exclude competition, to help them dominate?
It's a fkin joke..and it had to stop.
The problem for Carmelo is that nobody in India, China and the rest of the world, rides around on an FTR or a Suter. He needs them as much as they need GP..especially if Superbike is technologically dumbed down to BSB levels and the R&D angle is snuffed out there too.
I'd like to see GP maintain it's blue riband status for the manufacturers brand awarenes health, but the perception that R&D is part and parcel, needs to be outed for the sham it is, put back on the test track and more factories encouraged to compete by lowering costs and levelling the sporting playing field to improve the show. More fuel and engines, limited sensors, less weight.
Superbike for the teams, who are free to choose which brand they race and who can organise the Transatlantic type series/Superbike des nations races, closed season.